Not a bad little side gig, given how easily Noble Boy won the Highway Handicap (1200 metres) at Warwick Farm on Saturday.
Despite getting caught near the back and then way out wide, the four-year-old gelding won by two lengths ahead of Coup De Main, with Matthew Dale’s Sausedge third.
It’s Noble Boy’s fourth straight win — and second consecutive Highway salute — despite having only run in four races.
That’s why he’s the $4 favourite for the Country Championships (1400m) at Randwick on April 6.
But first he’s got to qualify through the heats and will head to Goulburn on March 2, where he needs to finish in the first two to earn a spot in the final.
«That’s the main goal … it’s massive, that’s huge mate,» Blowes said.
«To be honest I picked this Country Championships out before we’d even trialled him. He was giving us that sort of feel at home.
«For it to all be falling into place it’s pretty special.»
It’s not surprising Blowes says it’s a massive deal for him.
He’s got nine horses in his stable at the moment, with only five of them having raced — the rest are two-and-three-year-olds still learning the trade.
Blowes started out breaking in horses and pre-training them, before he got a gig with Cleary and got his own licence.
«Towards the end of last year I purchased a lot of land on course there at Queanbeyan so over the next couple of months I’ll set up and build my own stables and go from there,» he said.
«My family’s been involved in race horses for as long as I can remember and I’ve ridden horses since I could walk, played polocrosse and grew up on a farm [at Crookwell].
«So horses have been in my life for as long as I can remember.»
After the jump, Noble Boy found himself near the tail of the field, with star jockey Hugh Bowman forced to take him all the way around the outside before mowing down the leaders.
While Bowman always felt like his charge was going to win, Blowes admitted he wasn’t so sure.
«Who am I to be second guessing him?» Blowes said with a laugh.
«I said to him I’d just like to see him a little bit closer today than he was [last start] at Rosehill … I was worried, he was three deep with no cover.
«Hugh said, ‘Naaa, it wasn’t an issue, he was travelling the whole time’. He said he wasn’t worried at all, he had them covered from a long way out he thought. I didn’t think so.»
David Polkinghorne covers the Canberra Raiders, local rugby league, Canberra Cavalry, racing and cycling, along with every other sport, for The Canberra Times.